3 week minimum. For Immersion program students, by immersion program students.
There comes a point in a person’s bushcraft education where they need to be kicked out of the nest to do things on their own and gain a level of experience that is difficult to obtain during a formal course.
Once a certain level of skill and experience has been achieved, the greatest growth comes from a significant amount of time in the bush without an instructor because were an instructor present, the student would be tempted to ask questions rather than experiment and to rely on the instructor to set the agenda.
I participated in a four-week practicum in Alaska in 1995, and it remains as one of the most powerful outdoor learning experiences I’ve ever had, both from both the perspectives of hard skills and group dynamics.
This is why we’re announcing the Maine Bushcraft Practicum, a field-based outdoor living and travel experience for our Expecition Instructor (XI) certification program students. During the practicum, a small group of people enter the northwoods of Maine and live the lifestyle for a minimum of 3 weeks. There is no structure or instruction. The agenda is set by the participants. There is simply the daily life of living in the woods and on the water, traveling, fishing, harvesting edible plants, and slowing to the rhythm of the woods life.
There are equipment restriction; they carry minimal modern gear, and there is an emphasis on gear they’ve made themselves.
There is no tuition for this program, but it is for Expedition Instructor (XI) certification program students only. Camping fees, gear rental (if needed, for items such as canoes, etc.), food, and other costs are covered by the students. The experience is documented in participant logbooks. Instructors help with trip planning and logistics.
The guiding principle in all of our programs is to design programs that, were I starting out on the bushcraft journey, I’d like to take. The Maine Bushcraft Practicum is the next step.